Editor's Note

Editor’s Note: Fighting fatigue

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Looking over this issue of Safety+Health, I can’t help but notice how many of the news briefs in the “In the News” and “Industry Beat” sections of the magazine – at least six, in fact – touch, in some way, on worker fatigue, sleep or overwork.

We’re not specifically seeking out these studies to cover. Rather, their prevalence among the sources we routinely check for news about research is a sign of how big an issue the topic has become in the occupational safety and health community.

It’s the reason that, although we published a feature article on fatigue two years ago, we determined earlier this year that it was time to revisit the topic in depth.

This month, S+H contributor Susan Vargas takes a deeper look at worker fatigue, which affects every industry, and its link to on-the-job injuries. (See Waking up to the risks of workplace fatigue.) She speaks with multiple experts about the effects of fatigue on the human body and what employers can do to help their employees get more sleep and change attitudes about the value placed on working long hours – which, as National Safety Council fatigue expert Emily Whitcomb tells S+H, has traditionally been admired and rewarded in America.

NSC has made fatigue one of its strategic initiatives. As I write this, a September launch is scheduled for an employer toolkit containing resources – including templates for creating a policy – aimed at fighting fatigue. Look for an announcement at the NSC 2019 Congress & Expo in San Diego, and expect to hear more from the council in the future.

The S+H team will continue to keep you informed. Meanwhile, I hope you get some rest.

Melissa J. Ruminski The opinions expressed in “Editor’s Note” do not necessarily reflect those of the National Safety Council or affiliated local Chapters.

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